Day 4 – What if {hope} is the light leading us back home?

 Then she arose with her daughters-in-law to return from the country of Moab, for she had heard in the fields of Moab that the Lord had visited his people and given them food.

And they came to Bethlehem at the beginning of barley harvest.

Ruth 1:6 & 22

{hope} desire accompanied by expectation of or belief in fulfillment ~ Merriam-Webster

It was the time of the Judges.  We know this period of history was marked by cycles of disobedience, followed by discipline, leading God’s people to repentance and then peace.  And like a clock hand coming full circle to 12, the cycle would begin again.Ruth 1.6

Famine in the land certainly could have been a part of the continual cycle.  When consequences fall, discipline, and even judgment according to God’s Sovereignty, the natural response can be to run… to hide.  We see examples in scripture of this behavior – Adam and Eve in Genesis 3:9-10, Moses in Exodus 2:15 and the disciples when Jesus was arrested.  They hid – even Peter who was sure he would never deny his Lord – Luke 22:54-62.

I know it is true in Scripture, but really all I have to do is look at my own life.  When I stand still long enough and look back, it is easy for me to see the pattern in my own life.  As circumstances of my life at times have squeezed me almost to breaking, because of my own poor choices or by the natural consequence of living in a broken world, my tendency has been to run and hide.

I call it “hiding under my bed”.  It has been my natural response to life’s famine seasons.  Maybe this is my heart connection with Naomi.  My fleshly behavior signifies fear, {hope}lessness, and feelings of despair as I try frantically within my flesh and limited resources to fix my circumstances.

As a mother of two sons, if we were experiencing famine in our land, I probably would have been pressing my husband to find a way escape.  We want our children to have food, to grow and be healthy.  It is a protective motherly response – and many times based on fear rather than an expectant {hope} of good rising out of difficult circumstances.

Naomi followed her husband during a dry season of limited resources looking for hope in the land of Moab.  More than ten years later, feeling empty and possibly tempted to believe the famine had followed her like a shadow, Naomi heard {hope}ful news of a coming harvest in her homeland.  And when she heard the good news she got up and moved back toward home.  Was she moving back toward God?

Was she moving back toward God?  I don’t think of Naomi and hopeful as synonyms, but here I see she had a glimmer of hope.  And in a sense, I am reminded of the prodigal son getting up and choosing to head toward home hoping his father will have at least mercy enough to make him a servant.{hope}

These words in the ESV translation have not penetrated my thought processes until today…

for she had heard in the fields of Moab that the Lord had visited his people and given them food  Ruth 1:6

Was Naomi, along with her daughters in law, gleaning in the fields of Moab when she heard the hopeful words of God’s mercy and provision for His people in Judah?

Gleaning hope this morning as I recognize anew – famine is for a season.  Washed and refreshed today in remembering the safest place for me to run and hide in time of trouble is not under my bed but under God’s wing.

On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty rock, my refuge is God.  Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us. Selah   Psalm 62:7-8

Ponder:

These are the words of Boaz to Ruth:

The Lord repay you for what you have done, and a full reward be given you by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge!” Ruth 2:12

  • Will you ask the Lord about this blessing?
  • What does it mean?  Journal your thoughts.
  • Will you, along with me, ask Holy Spirit to reveal the hope found in taking refuge under God’s wings?
  • Isn’t it possible to actively seek refuge under His Wing?
  • Do you need hope?  Are you looking for a light in the distance – a light leading you back home?
  • What is your honest response to Jesus as the Light of the world?  Will you talk with Him about your need for a light – for Jesus?  And will you begin to travel toward His Light and head back home?

Eyes on Jesus… you’re Shining!

~Lisa


2 thoughts on “Day 4 – What if {hope} is the light leading us back home?

  1. Oh Lisa. Thank you for helping us recognize in Naomi and ourselves moments when that glimmer of hope comes in difficult places and it takes us from hopelessness to hope and faith. When I hear of God’s work in others it does bring me hope. Just yesterday John told me of a conversation with Tom, his brother in NC and his “encounter” with the Presence of God in an AA meeting. His words, “His Presence was holy.” It took Tom to hope and faith in the living God. It gives me hope for John’s brother, Bill, who needs an encounter with the Living Holy God that would bring him to believe in the God Who loves him passionately.

    Thank you Lisa for insights of hope on this journey.

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    1. Oh, my friend, Ruth, my friend, my friend. When I think of HOPE, of course, I think of YOU. And of course, I thought first of Romans 15:13 Thank you so much for your encouragement. I would be wandering chasing my tail if it weren’t for walk-talks and the wisdom of Holy Spirit conversing with us. I love you!!

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